My spring 2017 course “John Steinbeck's America” offered a chance to explore the intersection of history and literature during the period from the New Deal to the Great Society, through the work of one of its greatest authors, as well as an opportunity to use Digital Humanities (DH) tools to stimulate interest in Steinbeck and aid analysis of the “five layers” he said he wrote into his greatest novel. This articles explores the challenges and opportunities that accompanied the course's DH features.

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